2001: A Space Odyssey will be returning to theaters for its 50th anniversary, after a screening of a new 70mm print makes its debut at the upcoming Cannes Film Festival. Dunkirk and The Dark Knight director Christopher Nolan is actually making his first ever trip to Cannes to introduce the new print of the movie, which he personally helped oversee for Warner Bros. This special screening of 2001 is scheduled for Saturday, May 12, before the movie is re-released in select theaters on May 18 in 70mm.
Director Stanley Kubrick's legendary sci-fi movie was originally released in 70mm in 1968 and Warner Bros., with the help of Christopher Nolan, wanted to give modern audiences that same experience. Kubrick is one of the most important filmmakers in history, but 2001: A Space Odyssey is easily one of his most iconic works and is generally considered to be one of the greatest sci-fi movies ever made. Here's what Nolan had to say about the movie and the 70mm print he helped bring to life.
"One of my earliest memories of cinema is seeing Stanley Kubrick's 2001: A Space Odyssey, in 70mm, at the Leicester Square Theatre in London with my father. The opportunity to be involved in recreating that experience for a new generation, and of introducing our new unrestored 70mm print of Kubrick's masterpiece in all its analogue glory at the Festival de Cannes is an honour and a privilege."
For the first time since the original release, this 70mm print of 2001: A Space Odyssey was struck from new printing elements made from the original camera negative. This is a true photochemical film recreation. According to Cannes, there are no digital tricks, remastered effects, or revisionist edits. This is the real deal. The original version will be presented to recreate the cinematic event audiences experienced 50 years ago. Here's what Christiane Kubrick, the late director's wife, had to say about the event at Cannes.
"I'm delighted that Cannes has chosen to honour 2001: A Space Odyssey. If Stanley were alive today, we know he would be in admiration of the films of Christopher Nolan. And so, on behalf of Stanley's family, I would personally like to thank Christopher for agreeing to introduce this very special screening."
Cannes chief Thierry Fremaux added, "It is a great honour for the Festival de Cannes to host the 50th anniversary celebration of one of the most extraordinary films in the history of cinema. And to welcome to the Festival for the first time Christopher Nolan, whose presence creates a precious bond between past and present, without which cinema would have no history." In honor of the upcoming special screenings, a new poster for 2001: A Space Odyssey has also been released, which you can check out for yourself below. There's currently no word on how wide of a theatrical re-release the movie will get, but details on the screenings should be coming sooner rather than later. This news comes to us courtesy of Deadline.